Festivals, Institutions, Places

photo Alex Overton

Born at the foot of the Alps, with dual Franco-Swiss nationality and grandparents from Italy and Argentina, my origins inspire me to travel and engage with other cultures. I graduated from the CNR in Lyon with a degree in classical guitar, where I studied under Marc Franceries, and in music theory (counterpoint, harmony, and fugue) with Denis Magnon and Georges Aloy. I also obtained a Diploma of Advanced Studies in Composition from the CNSM in Lyon and studied film music at the Ecole Normale de Musique – Alfred Cortot in Paris.

Influenced by the extensive teachings of Gilbert Amy, Raffi Ourgandjian, Christian Accaoui (composition and orchestration), Robert Pascal (analysis), Yvette Grimaud (ethnomusicology), and Patrice Mestral (film music), I had significant encounters with Luigi Nono at the Acanthes center in 1989, as well as with Jean-Louis Florentz and Henri Dutilleux at their apartments on the Île Saint-Louis in Paris.

As a singer, I have written numerous vocal works. Driven by an open-minded approach to popular music and the diversity of musical styles, I collaborate closely with individuals proficient in various languages: French, English, German, Italian, Portuguese, Basque, dialects, and endangered languages.

For me, music represents the vastness of the spaces we can aspire to. Consequently, I sometimes explore diverse approaches in my compositions, always placing artistic and human encounters at the heart of my creative process.

As far back as I can remember, I have always loved creating: as a teenager then as a young man, sculpting wood, making musical instruments, wooden furniture, writing poems, short stories, tales then improvising on the guitar which was my instrument, before composing. Then begins a real construction work like a mason. It happens to have been the work of my Italian maternal grandfather. Ennio Morricone has also brought the two professions together! I am always fascinated by building sites. Composing: “putting together” stamps, notes, rhythms, words, voices, instruments…, but also the human encounters with the performers who are our voice, undoubtedly one of the most beautiful aspects. Each time a new adventure, a declaration of love for music!
Sacred music occupies an important place in my work: Four passions, oratorios, motets, missa brevis St Joseph… For the Passions, for example, I made sure that the approach of each evangelist was different: I remember having composed as if I were among the apostles, next to Jesus, trying to perceive everyone’s emotions, to make them mine (like Peter’s tears)…


  • 2023 AMIDEL Prize (Association of Friends of Éliane Lavail) for an Albert Marquet painting.
  • Musica per Archi / Composers Competition at the Lviv Philharmonic Society in Ukraine: Special mention for string orchestra composition titled “Amazonia.”
  • 2022 Composition 1st Prize at the 2nd Tiziano Rossetti International Music Competition in Lugano, Switzerland.
  • 2016-2015: Honored composer for selecting works to be performed at the Rencontres nationales de Chant choral and the International Choral Singing Competition of the 44th Florilège Vocal de Tours (artistic directors: Loïc Pierre and François Bazola).
  • 2014: Commissioned work by the IFAC (French Institute of Vocal Art).
  • 2013: “Prière pour la paix” (Prayer for Peace) selected for the Pueri Cantores 2014 Congress in Paris.
  • The Lads of Monleon: First prize at the First Hispasong International Composers Contest (Spain).
  • Diligam te, Domine: Winning piece in the 7th edition of the Amadeus Choral Composition Competition (Spain).
  • 2012: “Chiaroscuro” for solo double bass received the Grand Prize at the International Society of Bassists’ David Walter Composition Competition in New York.
  • Les Fées du Rhin: Composition prize at the Swiss children’s and youth choir festival.
  • 2009: Semi-finalist for “Frammenti dell’ Paradiso” (based on a text by Dante Alighieri) in the sacred choral composition competition in Fribourg, Switzerland.
  • 2008: Composition competition for wind orchestra in Lambersart.
  • 2000: Basel City Competition for mixed choir piece titled “Argizagi.”
  • 1989, “Standing Alone on the Mountain” earned laureate status at the International Lutoslawski Composition Competition.

Festivals, Institutions, Places
He has been played in Festival de Radio France-Montpellier, in Concertgebow d’Amsterdam, St Martin in the Fields…
His works are performed in Argentina, Belgium, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, England, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Iran, Japan, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Morocco, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, United States & Ukraine.


  • Spirito (conducted by Nicole Corti)
  • Chœur de l’ONPL (Choir of the National Orchestra of Pays de la Loire) and V. Fayet
  • Festival Les Voix du Prieuré (The Voices of the Priory Festival) with B. Têtu
  • Le Cepravoi (The Center for Vocal and Instrumental Research) with L. Pierre
  • Choeur Britten (Britten Choir) conducted by N. Corti
  • Ensemble Suonare e Cantare (Suonare e Cantare Ensemble) led by J. Gaillard
  • La Maîtrise de Paris (The Paris Children’s Choir) directed by P. Marco
  • La Maîtrise de la Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris (The Choir of Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris)
  • Ensemble Les Timbres
  • L’ensemble Hélios
  • Jeune Chœur de Paris (Young Choir of Paris) directed by F. Bardot
  • Chœur Calliope conducted by R. Théodoresco
  • Chœur et orchestre Ecce Cantus
  • L’Amia and the city of Strasbourg
  • Les Semaines Musicales de Quimper (The Musical Weeks of Quimper)
  • L’ensemble Opalescences
  • Le pOLyPhoNiCA Recorder Trio
  • Chœur d’enfants Amazing Grace (Amazing Grace Children’s Choir)
  • Panam’ Trombones
  • Conservatoires de Noisy-le-Grand, Joinville-le-Pont, Aix-les-Bains, Chilly-Mazarin, Villejuif

Among the soloists who have performed his music, we can mention: Sonia Wieder-Atherthon, Emmanuelle Bertrand, Thierry Barbé (solo double bass of the Opéra de Paris orchestra and professor at the CNSM in Paris), Emilie Gastaud (harp, co-soloist of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France), Christine Marchais, Pascale Rouet (at the International Organ Music Festival in Dudelange), Marc Sieffert, François Veilhan, Mathieu Justine, Jean Goyetche, André Simony,

He receives numerous commissions: in 2024, the Choeur de Jeunes Spirito; in 2023, the Printemps des Maîtrises conducted by Christophe Bergossi; in 2022, the Maîtrise de Lyon under the direction of Thibault Louppe; in 2021, the Quatuor Méliades, Christine Morel, and Sylvie Colas; in 2020, F. Calvo and the Estudiantina d’Argenteuil; in 2019, Les Futurs de l’Écrit from the Abbey of Noirlac; the Jeune Chœur de Paris directed by Francis Bardot; the Chœur Calliope directed by Régine Théodoresco; the Semaines Musicales de Quimper; the Chœur de l’ONPL with Valérie Fayet; the Festival Les Voix du Prieuré with Bernard Têtu; and Le Cepravoi with Loïc Pierre. In 2014, his work “Colporteur!” was commissioned by the State


Zoom Room for CFAMC Christian Fellowship of Art Music Composers (based in USA) thanks to William Vollinger composer to invite me to present some of my sacred & secular compositions

thanks to Anna Sutyagina artistic director of Moving Classics TV for this interview:

What does music mean to you personally?

Wide question! So many things that it will be to long to enumerate. The research of beauty, harmony but with enough surprising like in life!

Do you agree that music is all about fantasy?

Yes fantasy is in the heart of art but not only, one of the most important thing is the question of the form, how you are driven by the thought of the composer to this marvelous place (like a good story in a movie, a book)

If you were not a professional musician, what would you have been?

Paleontologist? Something related with nature…

The classical music audience is getting old, are you worried about the future?

No, but we have to ask us the good questions. Open the doors: the classical music is for every age everyone everywhere

What do you envision the role of music to be in the 21st century? Do you see that there is a transformation of this role?

I hate the vision of a music just for entertainment, who is playing faster, louder, higher! That‘s nothing to do with music. Fortunatly for many musicians who I met all over the world it‘s a strong, deep and vital thing which don‘t leave us. However I like to laugh!

Do you think that the musician today needs to be more creative? What is the role of creativity in the musical process for you?

As a composer it‘s a question that lives in me night and day! But I think that we have also to be creative imagining meetings with other forms of arts, places to play…

Do you think we as musicians can do something to attract the younger generation to music concerts? How would you do this?

It‘s a fondamental question! Yes we have to! Perhaps imagining some music, stories, staging approachable by young eyes, hears and spirit. The presentation is also fundamental.

Tell us about your creative process. What is your favorite piece (written by you) and how did you start working on it?

It‘s difficult for me to answer. Certainly we are happier about some scores than others but I turn to what will come. I began from the general shape and go more and more step by step to the details. There is also the sensation of an encounter: as if there were something else which whom converse, which even could suggest me some answers…

Can you give some advice for young people who want to discover classical music for themselves?

Go to concerts, meet some musicians at their own home where they will play simply and you will never forget these moments. On the roads, on holidays you can have many occasions to listen to musicians in the streets, the bars… without forgetting the birds, the animals, the song of the nature!

Do you think about the audience when composing?

Yes and no! I think about the musicians. Does this moment will be enough surprising, bewitching? We have to keep our minds sharp.

What projects are coming up? Do you experiment in your projects?

Next pieces are one for tenor solo, violin, choir and piano on the story of saffron, one for cello solo inspired by paintings and words of a friend… Friendship is also fundamental!

by Frances Wilson for Meet the artist
Who or what inspired you to take up composing, and pursue a career in music?

Probably my parents who used to listen to music: Bach, Mozart, Beethoven – could we imagine better teachers? Many years after, playing the guitar, the desire to imagine, create something new that didn’t exist a few minutes before… and now I’m in! Whatever I do, it’s not long before I start thinking of a new project.

Who or what were the most significant influences on your musical life and career as a composer?

Great (for me) composers, but also meeting with musicians, not only in respect of music but also the human dimension.

What have been the greatest challenges/frustrations of your career so far?

No frustrations, except that we would like to be played more (for example, the fact that sacred music is rather rare in France). The greatest challenges are to compose for the orchestra, a long-term work like writing an opera.

What are the special challenges/pleasures of working on a commissioned piece?

Each one is a new adventure based on the commission – be it professional, amateurs, children… If there is a text, the pleasure to invite music born from words; also to compose for someone who is unique.

What are the special challenges/pleasures of working with particular musicians, singers, ensembles and orchestras?

Whether it’s finding musicians or making friends, above all I’m always amazed at how much they understand my universe without my need to explain it a lot.

Of which works are you most proud?

I’m not sure “proud” is the word but my Indian songs, for example, give me joy.

How would you characterise your compositional language?

Difficult question: a path somewhere between tonality and atonality, modality classicism and modernity

How do you work?

Generally from broad to particular, from the whole to the detail, from a nebula which clears up until the first note, rhythm, or harmony appear.

Who are your favourite musicians/composers?

The list may be long! Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Bartok, Ravel, Stravinsky, Ligeti, Penderecki… and and so many others

As a musician, what is your definition of success?

It does not belong to me; of course we need recognition to live and continue to give the best of ourself

What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?

Love, hope, fraternity, more precisely the question of the shape (like in a movie, the scenario)

What is your present state of mind?


  • Early Musical Exposure: Growing up, you were surrounded by music at home, where your parents played classical and baroque records. You began your musical studies with piano and later learned the flute. During your teenage years, you even formed a folk music ensemble, constructing various instruments like the rebec, Vosges spinet, mandoloncello, cithara, and lute. Simultaneously, you devoted yourself to the guitar, studying under notable teachers.
  • Exploring Composition: Your passion for improvising and composing on the guitar naturally led you to explore music theory and composition. You fondly remember your professors at the Lyon Conservatory, where you delved into counterpoint, fugue, harmony, and analysis. You also pursued ethnomusicology, deepening your interest in folk music from various countries.
  • Film Music and Vocal Exploration: Your love for cinema prompted you to complete a film music diploma at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris. Additionally, your personal experience with singing and immersion in great vocal works (opera, oratorio, secular, sacred) influenced your path toward vocal and choral music.
  • Notable Works: Among your significant compositions are “Native America Songs,” “Hymne de l’Univers,” “Ombre et Lumière,” “O mundo todo abarco,” and the Passions according to St. Luke, Matthew, Mark, and John. You’ve also created shorter pieces for mixed choirs, women’s choirs, men’s choirs, and arrangements of folk songs from various countries. Notably, your works extend to young audiences, including the mini opera “Jean de la Lune,” the musical theater piece “Elementaire mon cher Watson,” and the narrative musical “A l’ombre du baobab.” Additionally, your cycle “Sur le Mont Kenya” adds to your impressive portfolio.

Your journey reflects a rich and diverse exploration of music, from instrumental compositions to vocal and choral works. 

  • How do you work? Do you take commissions, or do you approach certain ensembles yourself? I receive commissions, but I also reach out to both professional and amateur ensembles that I hold in high esteem. Sometimes, a project or cause inspires me to get to work.
  • How many current choral composers do you estimate there are in France? It’s hard to say, but there are quite a few. I personally know some of them, having had the chance to meet them.
  • Is being a composer today as challenging as it was for your illustrious predecessors? It depends on how you look at it. I think of all those immense composers who faced dark periods. The question is: “How can we support creativity today?” While artists and ensembles eager to create new works are present, the financial aspects, according to many involved, can be quite challenging!
  • What are you currently working on? I’ve just completed a composition for soloist, choir, and African instruments. It was inspired by Thierry Dechaume, a true catalyst who does a tremendous amount for choral music and vocal performance.
  • Will any of your works be performed soon? “The Passion according to St. John” for soloists, choir, and 12 instruments will be performed during the Good Friday service at the Collegiate Church of Briançon, followed by a concert in Gap. I want to express my gratitude to Jean-Michel Bardet, a longtime friend, for successfully leading this ambitious project. Additionally, “Djinadio,” an homage to the Dogon village that lent its name to the composition I mentioned earlier, will be premiered near Angers in May by the beautiful voices of Laeta Voce under the direction of Asta Lemiesle